Holly Mackay

Written by

Holly Mackay

Content correct as of

08 September 2017


Back to School and Avocado Alert

It’s been Back to School for workers and pupils in England and Wales this week. Facebook has buckled under the weight of photos of sweet little people bundled up in stiff new uniforms (which will be lying in a crumpled heap on the floor of someone else’s bedroom by the end of next week!)  
 
We’ve seen pictures of Prince George and coverage of his eye-watering £18,000 a year prep school. School fees can be a major driver for parents and grandparents when it comes to saving. Our Tired Parents pages have loads of tips and ideas on three things that parents of small children tell us they worry about or need help with – wills, life insurance and Junior ISAs. Even if private school fees are out of reach, Junior ISAs can be a good way to save in a largely tax-free environment.  Even £50 a month, over an 18 year period, could turn into about £16,000 if you assume average returns of 4% after fees. You can download our 3 page factsheet here for the lowdown.
 
Since we wrote this factsheet, low-cost manager Vanguard has opened its doors up for direct Junior ISA business online. If you pick one of their LifeStrategy funds (a ready-made diversified global portfolio) the all-in charges for this Junior ISA will be a low 0.37% a year. I’m going to open up a new account for the kids here this year. It’s easy. And cheap. And will just chug away in the background with someone else managing it for me so I can forget about it. It’s a minimum of £500 or £100 on a monthly direct debit.
 
Next week is busy. I’m speaking to the W.I. on Monday night in Tunbridge Wells. The rather brilliantly named Wells Angels.  And it’s our annual conference on Thursday when I’m interviewing the Pensions Minister, the CEOs of 3 robo advisers and Helena Morrissey, the new boss of Legal & General’s personal investment business. Who will have loved back to school week more than most of us as she has 9 children! (One can only imagine how much she spends in Clarks.) We’re all about making finance better and less complicated for ‘normal people’. If you have any questions, observations or rants you’d like me to raise with any of our speakers from across the industry, please let me know.
 
I leave you with news of the latest danger to hit our shores. Not Trump. Not a hurricane. But the avocado. One of Boring Money’s team spent most of yesterday in A&E after slicing between her fingers whilst cutting an avocado. Apparently this is now a recognised and growing hazard and staff at Chelsea and Westminster hospital refer to it as ‘avocado hand’. #firstworldproblems She has of course been duly teased and reminded that Shreddies are cheaper and pretty safe as a rule!